38 North

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38 North
Available in English
Owner A program of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University's Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies
Website www.38north.org
Commercial No
Registration No
Current status Active

38 North is a website devoted to analysis about North Korea; it is a program of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University's Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies and is managed by former U.S. Department of State official Joel S. Wit and USKI Assistant Director Jenny Town.[1] Notable contributors include nuclear scientist Sigfried Hecker,[2] former Associated Press Pyongyang Bureau Chief Jean H. Lee,[3] cybersecurity expert James Andrew Lewis,[4] and North Korea Tech founder Martyn Williams.[5]

Satellite imagery analysis

38 North uses commercial satellite imagery of key areas of interest in North Korea, providing its analysts with the opportunity to uncover insight into developments within the country.

In November 2013, 38 North published a discovery of new construction at a North Korean missile launching site, which the institute said was being upgraded to handle larger rockets.[6]

In January 2016, 38 North reported on North Korea’s ballistic missile submarine program, using satellite imagery analysis of Sinpo South Shipyard, following the “ejection” test of a submarine-launched ballistic missile on December 21, 2015.[7] Joseph Bermudez said the imagery was indicative of North Korea’s active pursuit of its SLBM program,[8] a prediction that was later supported by four SLBM tests throughout the year on March 16, April 23, July 9, and August 24.[9]

Later in January 2016, 38 North reported suspicious activity at North Korea’s Sohae Satellite Launching Station. Satellite imagery analysis by Jack Liu showed low-level activity at key facilities and sites at Sohae.[10] Ten days after the article was published, North Korea conducted its launch of the Unha-4 carrying the Kwangmyongsong-4 satellite at Sohae.[11]

In April 2016, 38 North analysts reported on exhaust plumes from a steam plant at Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center used to heat the mail plant, a possible indicator that reprocessing additional plutonium could be underway.[12] In mid-April, 38 North reported on activity indicating North Korea was beginning to reprocess plutonium for nuclear weapons.[13][14] The International Atomic Energy Agency did not confirm this until June 7, nearly two months later.[15]

In September 2016, 38 North reported new activity near all three portals at the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site, based on satellite imagery analysis conducted by Joseph Bermudez and Jack Liu.[16] The activity indicated that maintenance and minor excavation operations had resumed. The next day, North Korea conducted its fifth nuclear test at Punggye-ri.[17]

See also

References

  1. ^ "About | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-03. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  2. ^ "What to Make of North Korea's Latest Nuclear Test? | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-01-25. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  3. ^ "North Korea's Expanding Foreign Press Corps | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-03-12. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  4. ^ "James A. Lewis | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  5. ^ "Martyn Williams | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  6. ^ "North Korea: Construction Seen at Rocket Site, Institute Reports". New York Times. 29 November 2013. Archived from the original on 18 August 2017. Retrieved 9 August 2016. 
  7. ^ "North Korea's Ballistic Missile Submarine Program: Full Steam Ahead | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  8. ^ Press, Associated (2016-01-05). "North Korea still working on submarine ballistic missile despite reported setback". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  9. ^ "Monitoring the Threat: a Timeline of North Korean Missile Tests 2013-2016 | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  10. ^ "Suspicious Activity at North Korea's Sohae Satellite Launching Station | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  11. ^ "North Korean rocket puts object into space, angers neighbors, U.S". Reuters. 2017-02-08. Archived from the original on 2017-02-24. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  12. ^ "Suspicious Activity at Yongbyon Radiochemical Laboratory; Progress Towards Completing the Experimental Light Water Reactor | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  13. ^ "More Evidence of Possible Reprocessing Campaign at North Korea's Yongbyon Facility | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2016-04-16. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  14. ^ CNN, Euan McKirdy. "'Suspicious activity' at N. Korea nuke site". CNN. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  15. ^ "N Korea's Yongbyon plutonium site likely reactivated says IAEA". BBC News. 2016-06-07. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  16. ^ "New Activity Near All Three Portals at the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38north.org. Archived from the original on 2016-09-09. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  17. ^ Hartmann, Margaret. "5th North Korea Nuclear Test Suspected After Earthquake Is Detected". Daily Intelligencer. Archived from the original on 2017-02-18. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 

External links

  • Official website


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